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10 WordPress Plugins for New Blogs

Over the weekend I set up and launched my new Twitter Tips Blog – TwiTip.

Since announcing the launch of TwiTip here on ProBlogger I’ve been asked quite a few times about what WordPress plugins I’ve installed to enhance and add features to the blog.

I still need to add a few more but so far I’ve added the following 10 WordPress plugins:

  1. Akismet – a great comment spam plugin. Interestingly I had comment spam on TwiTip that Akismet filtered within minutes of launching the blog on Twitter.
  2. All in One SEO Pack – a plugin that helps to optimize a blog for search engines. It gives easy ways to set up title tags, descriptions, keywords (both for home pages but also on individual posts) and a variety of other settings that have an impact upon SEO.
  3. cforms – a powerful contact form plugin. It’s a lot more complex than other comment form plugins out there but has a lot more features (some that I’m yet to fully test).
  4. Google XML Sitemaps – a plugin to help Google and other search engines to find every page and post on your blog – good for getting a new blog indexed quickly.
  5. Simple Tags – extends the built in tags features on WordPress.
  6. Subscribe To Comments – a WordPress plugin that allows those leaving comments to check a box and be notified when other people leave a comment on that thread.
  7. Tweet This – ads an invitation for readers to Tweet a link to the post they are reading. While I wouldn’t put this on every blog – it seemed a no brainer on a blog about Twitter.
  8. WordPress.com Stats – I’m using Google Analytics as my main metrics tool for TwiTip but it doesn’t update in real time so this plugin helps to get a quick update of what’s happening on the blog at any given point in time.
  9. WP-Polls – an AJAX polling plugin with some nice features. I’ve previously used the Democracy Plugin but this one seems to be working really nicely so far.
  10. WP Ajax Edit Comments – this plugin allows those leaving comments to edit their comments for a short period of time after they leave a comment.

These are just the first 10 that I’ve already installed (listed in alphabetical order and not in order of importance). There are more to come. For example I’ll install Related Posts (pointless at this point as there are only 5 posts on the blog), WP-Navi (again, no point to install it yet as I don’t have enough posts to need a navigation tool) and WP Super Cache (I’m not doing enough traffic to really need it yet).

They are the 10 WordPress Plugins I’ve installed on TwiTip. If you were starting a new WordPress blog today – which plugins would you be installing?

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Hi Darren,

    Usefull post !! Two months ago i started my blog (http://www.alcidesfialho.eu) and because we have thousands of usefull plugins, what i did was to create a ”test site” in order to test the plugins i found interesting. after a while of testing and tweaking, this is my final release :

    Askimet
    All in one SEO pack
    Cforms
    Feedburner feedsmith
    Google XML sitemaps
    KB Advanced RSS Widget
    Lightbox Plus
    My Page Order
    Sociable
    Woopra

    Nevertheless it was really hard in the begining to understand which ones where the right ones !!!

    Cheers !!!

  2. @ Kathrin – it’s been awhile since I installed Askimet but I think the way it works now is you have to sign up for a free account on WordPress.com in order to receive your API key.

    You don’t have to do anything with the account. Then when you get your API key, enter it in on your hosted WordPress account and your golden.

    If you have troubles, go to my site and use the contact form to “Contact John” and I’ll be more than happy to assist you.

  3. One of the newest plugins, very popular is the caffeinated content plugin. It helps you pull a lot of unique data on your blog. You can even get YouTube videos on there. And so much more. Very cool plugin!

  4. Kempton says:

    I just set up a blog with the plug in TDO Mini Forms, which enabled me to create a kind of twitter like site. The actual site I made is actually a revrse twitter, people can post about what they see other people doing. The forms plug in is really great, os if you are interested in twitter type products, you may want to check it out.

  5. Last time I knew, wp.com-stats was cached and displays cached data. Granted it’s not an only once a day update like Analytics is but it’s not live.

    At least that’s what Automattic folks tell people on the wp.com forums.

  6. I really want the WordPress Comment Ninja pluggin, but have heard it’s a pain to get up and running. :(

  7. exinco says:

    any suggestion for integrated forum with wordpress blog?

  8. I only have a few plugins I like to use and find worthwhile
    Askimet
    All in one SEO pack
    Cforms
    Google XML sitemaps

    and the latest one I have added is Privacy Policy maker…google seems to like about us, contact us and privacy policy pages as part of their ranking system.

  9. dirtybluewidgets: It iis much easier to write your contact and policy pages into your theme templates. You never become plugin dependent and as such don’t have to worry about upgrades.

    exinco: Simple Press Forum works great I have just set it up at http://bradstinyworld.com/forum/

    Another new plugin I discovered a couple of days ago is wp link directory. The plugin will autmoatically allow visitors to add links into prearranged categories. While this has potential for abuse it also has great potential for new websites if you are willing to monitor it. This is my first time promoting the plugin in use, so I am only using it on a low ranking site until I can get a feel for it. The nice thing is I can always manually add nofollow tags or delete any link I don’t want to pass value on to.

    http://wtfarewegoingtodonow.com/link-directory/

  10. Hi Darren,

    The following are necessities in my opinion: Akismet, all-in-one SEO, Share This, Subscribe to Comments, Google XML Sitemaps.

    Nice to have: WP Polls, Automatic Upgrader, Top Commentators.

    What is the best popularity/post rating plugin you’ve seen or used?

  11. Kumaresan says:

    Just what I was looking for, Thanks Darren

  12. redwall_hp says:

    I also recommend the useful WP125 plugin (yeah, it’s mine… :D ). It makes it real easy to manage 125×125 ads when you get to the point that you’re direct-selling your own ads.

    http://www.webmaster-source.com/wp125-ad-plugin-wordpress/

    Now I admit that the plugin’s not going to do you a whole lot of good in your blog’s early days, unless you have a fantastic launch like TwiTip or Freelance Switch had, but it’s worth keeping in mind for the future. (Or you could put affiliate banners in until you can get “real” sponsors).

    I also recommend WP Super Cache. It will save you a fair bit of money by taking a lot of load off your server. It breaks some plugins, but it’s worth it if you’re on shared hosting.

  13. Martin says:

    I like Codebanter’s WordPress autoresponder plugin, http://www.CodeBanter.com

    Works like a charm..

  14. Tom says:

    Awesome Darren, thank you for putting out this list.

    Also Thanks to all the commenters who put their two cents in. I got exposed to a lot of new plug-ins just from reading through the comments.

  15. I love the CodeBanter, really cool and of course FREE :)

  16. Just what I was looking for, Thanks Darren

  17. Infonote says:

    I cannot believe you left out WP Super Cache especially for a new popular site like yours. You are causing unnecessary strain on the DB.

  18. Avi Alkalay says:

    Darren, I’d like to suggest Yawasp for an ultimate spam fighting solution. It uses innovative but yet simple methods to fight spam and I completely stopped getting spam.

    I wrote a small article about it on http://avi.alkalay.net/2008/12/yawasp-blog-anti-spam-solution.html

  19. Avi Alkalay says:

    There is one more to suggest. The Google Maps plugin, to let you very easily embed simple and complex maps in your posts.

    I wrote it myself and can be found here:
    http://avi.alkalay.net/2006/11/google-maps-plugin-for-wordpress.html
    http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/google-maps-advanced/

    Thanks

  20. xgravity23 says:

    I just recently wrote a guest post on BloggersGuide.net about 5 plugins I recommend, and mine had a decidedly social networking bent to them. Here’s the post: Five More WordPress Plugins to Simplify Your Blogging

  21. keram says:

    I have been experimenting with various breadcrumb plugins.

    Also no one mentioned MBP’s Faveicon plugin for a little pro-looking custom flourish in the URL browser line and search results.

    Thanks to everyone for all the st replies

  22. Rudi Lehnert says:

    Here are my recommendations for plugins and themes:

    http://blogorama.eisbrecher.net/2008/09/12/wordpress-backstage/

  23. Rudi Lehnert says:

    I forgot to recommend WP-SPAMFREE – absolutely the best Spamkiller I ever plugged into WordPress! See the red button on the bottom of the sidebar:

    http://blogorama.eisbrecher.net

  24. I’m looking for a good photo album plug-in that allows you to display several photo thumbnails; any recommendations?

  25. @Andrea when it comes to creating galleries there is no plugin better than NextGen gallery. It takes some time to learn the plugin effectively but for gallery there is nothing better in my opinion.

  26. Great list Darren, Thanks for sharing.

    Terry

  27. YRP Jen says:

    Awesome – I’m going to use Subscribe to Comments.

    We just started our website, blog and forum & would appreciate feedback – http://www.yourrealtyportal.com. The site is for professionals in the real estate industry.

    ProBlogger continues to be a wealth of information so I have it on our website as a must-have tool! YRP Jen.

  28. Jeff says:

    It’s worth saying: this post is still essential for starting new blogs

  29. staxbrix stax brix says:
  30. Thailandseo says:

    Great list! and Thanks for sharing to me.

  31. B Becker says:

    Here are a few we really like on our craft blog at http://www.favecraftsblog.com such as:
    Smart Youtube – Insert YouTube videos in posts
    Sociable 3.0.2 – Automatically add links on your posts, pages and RSS feed to your favorite social bookmarking sites.
    WordPress Database Backup – automatic or on-demand backup of your WordPress database.
    Thanks to everyone for sharing.

  32. Hikari says:

    Those are nice plugins. Tnx for the tips.

  33. Lizy Buelle says:

    Well, actually, I might be wrong. It does appear to have some issues when I’m using it on my new blog.

  34. Jeremy Burns says:

    Super plugin advice. I have had a blog installed for a few years and only made 4 pr 5 posts to it. I was just setting up a new blog that I am committed to actually getting off the ground this time.

    I was not sure of what plugins to start with so I figured even better than Goggle, go search ProBlogger for the answer to this question.

    Glad I did, thank you!

  35. Big Robby says:

    Good article. I prefer Platinum SEO because it automatically handles 301′s if you change a page name, tag name, etc. Also, socialite is a cool plugin that will send a tweet whenever you post or update an article.

  36. Jessica says:

    Plugins are one of the reasons that WordPress is so great… they provide a lot of freedom that you can’t really get with other platforms. I’ll be doing a post on my blog soon all about why WP is great, Anyone’s interested?